Economic Development Survey Highlights Lasting Impacts of COVID-19 Pandemic on Local Businesses

Over the last year, 32% of respondents had a positive change in attitude about doing business in the Windsor-Essex community

For Immediate Release
June 23, 2022

Windsor, ON – Today, Workforce WindsorEssex, Invest WindsorEssex, and St. Clair College launched the results of their Windsor-Essex Economic Development Survey.

The survey received 117 responses from local businesses, the majority of which were from the Manufacturing and Other Services sectors. Of the 117 responses, 41% were from micro businesses, which have between one and four employees.

This annual survey, which was conducted from May 2-June 3, 2022, identifies the needs of businesses and assists economic development professionals to develop strategies that will support businesses to stay, grow, and become more competitive.

When looking at how businesses are operating, a total of 72% of respondents have all employees in the workplace, while 9% of respondents noted that they will continue to operate their businesses remotely on an indefinite basis.

When looking to hire, 39% of employers ranked the availability of qualified workers as Fair, and 31% of respondents ranking the ability to retain new employees as Good.

Survey respondents varied in their recent experiences with the community. While 54% of respondents reported no attitude change about doing business in the community since last year, 14% feel more negative since last year. Of the respondents, 68 businesses reported they plan to expand and four indicated they will be closing. The top barriers to growth in the region were identified as workforce skills shortage, marketing, and financing. The cost of space for rent or lease, cost of electricity, and support from municipality were identified by respondents as the most negative factors in doing business in the community.

On the brighter side, 81% of respondents feel that the Windsor-Essex region is an Excellent or Good community in which to do business and most positively ranked the following factors: access to high speed or fiber optic internet and availability of adequate electricity.

Responses from the Windsor-Essex Economic Development Survey will inform efforts in developing economic recovery plans for the region and for individual sectors as well as for broader programming for Windsor-Essex businesses.



“Through the survey we are able to not only identify pain points of employers, but their successes as well. Sharing the findings with the community allows all stakeholders to identify where they can better support employers and the labour market overall, whether through funding, training, education, or recruitment.”

  • Tashlyn Teskey, Manager of Projects and Research, Workforce WindsorEssex

« Grace au sondage, nous avons pu identifier non seulement des points faibles des employeurs, mais aussi leurs succès. Le partage des données et des conclusions permet aux partis prenants d’identifier comment ils peuvent mieux desservir les employeurs ainsi que le marché du travail dans son entièreté, soit par financement, formation, éducation ou en recrutement. »

  • Tashlyn Teskey, Gérante des projets et de la recherche, Workforce WindsorEssex

“The Windsor-Essex Economic Development Survey provides valuable data and insights that help shape the region’s action plan including the development of relevant programming and business resources. A number of positive opportunities and business needs have been highlighted from our local companies. This will help Windsor-Essex overcome identified economic challenges and continue to grow and remain competitive.”

  • Stephen MacKenzie, President and Chief Executive Officer, Invest WindsorEssex

« Le sondage de développement économique Windsor-Essex fournit des données et des réflexions qui aident à développer un plan d’action pour la création d’une programmation pertinente ainsi que des ressources économiques. Plusieurs opportunités positives, avec des besoins des entreprises, ont été surlignés par nos compagnies locales. Cela aidera certainement à la région de Windsor-Essex de surmonter des difficultés et des obstacles économiques identifiés pour que nous puissions continuer d’accroître et de demeurer compétitif. »

  • Stephen MacKenzie, Président et Directeur général, Invest WindsorEssex


Quick Links:

  • Results from the Windsor-Essex Economic Development survey, including an interactive dashboard, can be found by clicking here.


Media Contact:
Lindsey Rivait
Executive Assistant & Researcher
Workforce WindsorEssex


About Workforce WindsorEssex

Workforce WindsorEssex is a workforce and community development board whose mission is to lead regional employment and community planning for the development of a strong and sustainable workforce.

Workforce WindsorEssex is an experienced leader in the development of regional labour market tools, research, guides, and events that create positive change in the local labour market while saving others time and effort. These resources, created in close coordination with employment, education, and industry partners, are designed to help jobseekers, employers, students, and educators, as well as the community, make more informed labour market decisions using locally-responsive, data-rich, and unbiased resources. To learn more about Workforce WindsorEssex and view our tools and resources, visit


About Invest WindsorEssex

Invest WindsorEssex is the lead economic development agency for the Windsor-Essex region. The focus of the organization is to develop and execute strategies to retain, expand, attract, and help new businesses start-up in the Windsor-Essex region. Invest WindsorEssex is led by a board of distinguished community leaders. A team of professional staff assists with location and investment decisions by working one-on-one with businesses to facilitate the process of starting, growing, or locating in Windsor-Essex. To learn more about Invest WindsorEssex, visit


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